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Currently viewing the tag: "Lobbyists"

Completely inane decisions like this sometimes strike me dumb with incredulity:

The White House intends to nominate Philip Johnson, the head of intellectual property at Johnson & Johnson, to be the next director of the US Patent and Trademark Office. The selection is a setback for the tech sector and a seeming 180-degree turn on the patent issue for the Obama administration, which was pushing Congress to pass patent litigation reform just months ago…

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Fire BAD! Partisanship GOOD!

Remember our general disgust with Evan Bayh back in January when he decided to (surprise!) become a lobbyist after leaving Congress?

Well sir, it gets worse:

Today, the former senator who decried “strident partisanship” and “unyielding ideology” will be paid by a ridiculous cable news outlet that exists to spew “strident partisanship” and “unyielding ideology.”

Fox News officially announced on Monday afternoon that former Democratic Senator Evan Bayh is becoming a contributor to the network.

Michael Clemente, the network’s senior vice president for news, announced the move in a statement. He said that “Senator Bayh’s decades of experience in the political arena and his participation in key decisions in Washington will lend a valuable point of view to the entire Fox News lineup.”

“I’m pleased to offer analysis of public policy and politics to the millions of Americans who get their news from Fox,” Bayh said in the statement.

Howard Kurtz said it’s “good” for Fox News to hire “a prominent Democrat.” But that’s fundamentally at odds with what’s transpiring here — Fox News hires Democrats who can be reliably counted on to say unpleasant things about Democrats. Why do you think Doug Schoen is on Fox News all the time? Because of his charming smile or because he’s the “Democrat” who hates Democrats?

I realize that politics has always been a heaping portion of manure slathered onto a warm shit sandwich but did politicians ever try to do a better job of hiding their true nature as corrupt, duplicitous assholes?  I mean, at least give it some effort!


When did lobbyists become totally legitimate sources for news stories?: “Scott Segal, an energy lobbyist with Bracewell & Giuliani, said [White House Climate Adviser Carol] Browner’s exit could ‘be a part of a legitimate effort to pay careful attention to addressing some of the real regulatory obstacles in the way of job creation.'”

Segal works for Rudy’s lobbying shop. Bet he’s impartial.

Lev filed this under: , ,  

Radley Balko:

If the broadcasters had been more successful in their lobbying over the years, we’d have had no cable TV; no VCRs, DVDs or Blu-Ray; no recordable cassette tapes; no iPods; and certainly no satellite radio.

But I’d still get to keep my torrents, right?! ; )

Gherald filed this under: , ,  

To stop wasteful, institutionalized bribery (of which both Democrats and Republicans are guilty) like this:

Republicans are stepping up their campaign to win donations from Wall Street, trying to capitalize on an increasing sense of regret among executives at big financial institutions for backing Democrats in 2008.

In discussions with Wall Street executives, Republicans are striving to make the case that they are banks’ best hope of preventing President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats from cracking down on Wall Street. […]

[House Minority Leader John Boehner] told [James Dimon, the chairman and chief executive of J.P. Morgan] congressional Republicans had stood up to Mr. Obama’s efforts to curb pay and impose new regulations.

In Non-Bizzaro America, the Republicans’ very-public whoring of themselves to Wall Street during a time of high unemployment, rage at the banking industry and massive middle class insecurity would doom their chances in the 2010 elections.

In Bizzaro America, Fox News and Frank Luntz will inevitably wash away the taint and the sheeple will just keep chewing their cud and waiting for the Rapture.

And so it goes…


News like this is unequivocally good in my view:

Nearly all of this work is done below the radar, but dozens of government agencies hear from hundreds of official advisory committees, featuring tens of thousands of unpaid members. In general, the panels are made up of people with a certain expertise in obscure areas of public policy, representing companies, trade groups, or advocacy organizations.

It’s a fairly standard practice for these advisory committees to include plenty of lobbyists. It’s a practice the Obama administration is changing.

Hundreds, if not thousands, of lobbyists are likely to be ejected from federal advisory panels as part of a little-noticed initiative by the Obama administration to curb K Street’s influence in Washington, according to White House officials and lobbying experts.

The new policy — issued with little fanfare this fall by the White House ethics counsel — may turn out to be the most far-reaching lobbying rule change so far from President Obama, who also has sought to restrict the ability of lobbyists to get jobs in his administration and to negotiate over stimulus contracts. […]

Under the policy, which is being phased in over the coming months, none of the more than 13,000 lobbyists in Washington would be able to hold seats on the committees, which advise agencies on trade rules, troop levels, environmental regulations, consumer protections and thousands of other government policies.

One always wonders how things would be different in this country if everyday people (qua everyday people) were represented by some kind of a lobbying group, a group that worked to advance policies that benefit the American people as a whole — which would serve as a counterbalance to the corporate, monied interests who wield 90%+ of the clout on Capitol Hill…

Oh wait, the people’s interests are supposed to be represented by their elected representatives.


Oh, and cue the waaaahmbulance:

But lobbyists and many of the businesses they represent say K Street is being unfairly demonized by a White House intent on scoring political points with scandal-weary voters. They warn that the latest policy will severely handicap federal regulators, who rely heavily on advisory boards for technical advice and to serve as liaisons between government and industry.

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